Magazine
Latest Issue

Human rights and terrorism

The Human Rights Act is a welcome constraint on government. But can it threaten our ability to fight terrorism?

By David Goodhart   September 2005

Dear Roger 9th August 2005 The Human Rights Act—one of New Labour’s great constitutional innovations—is a welcome check on the “democratic absolutism” of British governments. By entrenching the European convention on human rights in our law, it requires public bodies—schools, prisons, government departments and so on—to uphold basic human rights, such as privacy or the right to a fair trial. This constrains crude majoritarianism, but the act is also designed to preserve most aspects of parliamentary sovereignty. A judge can declare an existing law incompatible with the Human Rights Act (HRA), and it is then left to parliament to change…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect